The Time Traveler first steps out of his magnificent time-transport machine in the year 802,700. He finds Earth populated by a race of slender pacifists and decides to study this lush land of flower people before returning to his own age. These pacifists, he discovers, have built their wealth on the backs of a slave class forced to live below ground. As the conflict between the classes surfaces, the Time Traveler finds that his only means of escape, his time machine, has been stolen.
Wells' amazing view of the future, propelled forward from his own Victorian era to the present, serves both as classic science fiction and as a parable of the chasm between the working-class suffering and the upper-class privilege of his day.